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Mark Nicoll

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  1. 134 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    [Edit - oh man, now that this has been merged I can see how many times I've replied to all the different versions of this thread all in the same place! ha ha ah ehh :~]

    Hmmm. I broadly agree with this, but this particular instance of this request (which the others have been merged into) needs clarification;

    - Workspaces and 'toolbars' are the same thing; yes, Workspaces should be synced.
    - 'hotkey settings' are Keyboard Shortcuts; yep!
    - Preferences - absolutely.

    In addition to these, all the other user-configurable preset content should be synced to the cloud as well, including;

    - Scripts
    - Graphic styles
    - Textures
    - Symbols
    - Brushes
    - Actions
    - Tools
    - save settings (including Save for Web settings, PDF, etc.)
    - Templates

    I get that syncing plugins could be more problematic, eg. with potential licensing and storage issues, but how hard could it be to integrate support for that? Astute probably wouldn't need it given that they've got their own stand-alone 'Astute Manager', but for other plugins linking to a ZXP to re-install would be both very useful and trivial to implement.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Yes, the entire user environment should be synced in creative cloud:

    * preferences
    * keyboard shortcuts
    * actions
    * scripts
    * custom presets (templates, swatches, graphic styles, brushes, symbols, patterns)

    Adobe - there's half a dozen or so ideas shared for this same feature now, perhaps join then together?

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Yep, and not just workspaces. The entire user environment should be synced in creative cloud:

    * preferences
    * keyboard shortcuts
    * actions
    * scripts
    * custom presets (templates, swatches, graphic styles, brushes, symbols, patterns)

    Do check out the other feature requests for this, give 'em some love too! :)

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Keyboard shortcuts, preferences, workspaces, pre-sets, scripts, actions, symbols, graphic styles, swatches and the rest; I want all that stuff to appear in a seamless, hassle-free bespoke Illustrator environment when I re-install or login on a new machine. It should be synced with my account.

  2. 14 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    @beat the instability you describe is likely to be a separate issue to the one tested and described here; this issue was resolved in version 27.4+

    However, I can't recomend upgrading because version 27.3+ introduces an even more awful PDF file saving issue.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    @Susan, sorry to hear that, it's most frustrating. Have you posted (or voted for) a bug report yet? I've not had a chance to test the PDF error properly to identify clear steps to repeat outside a working document. All this unoficial QA work takes more time than I have right now!

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    @Egor, confirmed, I was unable to reproduce it on a PC. But also yes, it does seem extra slow (though I've not run my benchmark script accross versions to check).

    Back on the M1 MBP, I tested 27.3.1 and can say the bug is much more rare here. The only way I could reproduce it there was by opening a test file made in 27.2, and even there it took a lot more effort to cause the crash to happen. HOWEVER, 27.3+ appears to introduce a PDF filesave bug that is too bad to live with. I won't be updating at least until that is resolved :|

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    @Egor - attempting to attach a test file. I previously tried to upload a video but it didn't succeed. The file is 180MB (I went from new document and making the moderately complex object from scratch).

    I've been in contact via email with Wasim Ansari, who has been following this. He's the one who asked for the video, since he says he's unable to reproduce via my steps (which surprises me as I've been able to quickly and reliably reproduce it on 5 separate devices including a couple of brand new ones).

    Steps to repeat:
    1. New Document
    2. Make a rectangle. Duplicate it a few times. Group them together. Add a text frame. Select the whole lot, duplicate a few times, group, repeat... aim for approximately 150k points.
    3. click and drag the whole lot around a bit.
    4. Has it crashed yet? If not, duplicate it one more time and repeat step 3.

    Note - on an M2 mac complexity equivalent to around 2m points may be needed to cause the crash. But it still happens as described!

    These steps have worked on the following hardware: 2x M1 Macbook Pros, an M1 Macbook air, an M2 Macbook Pro and an M2 Macbook Air. These have variously been running Monterey, Ventura 13.0.1, 13.1, 13.2 and 13.2.1. One of the M1 devices had just been refreshed, and both M2 devices were brand new (ie. fresh illustrator installs). Illustrator versions 27.1, 27.2, 27.3 and even 27.4.428. GPU Performance on and off.

    Note - I have NOT been able to reproduce the bug in Illustrator 2022 26

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    I've tested Illustrator 27.1 and 27.2, Ventura 13.0.1 and 13.2, with GPU performance and without; I'm able to recreate the crash in every case.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    This is what I, and users where I work, are experiencing:

    We're all on Macbook Pros running Ventura. Most of them are M1, one is M2. None of us are using Wacom tablets.

    We're all using Illustrator 2023 (27). I've not yet been able to recreate it on version 26.

    We're finding that dragging moderately complex groups of items crashes Illustrator pretty reliably.

    I've managed to recreate it with just rectangles and text frames. Make a few, group them, copy paste, group and repeat a few times over to get a moderately complex object. Then just drag it around a bit. This also happens in outline mode, so might be worth trying that.

    It's pretty bad.

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  3. 10 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Yep, also loads of MRAP errors for no obvious reason in ExtendScript in 2023

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  4. 90 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    I'd be happy enough if the pivot point just hung around in between using it with the free transform tool, let alone if it were integrated into the other tools in a logical way... that could be some powerful magic.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    In a few months it'll be this post's 4th aniversary... still wanting it.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    In other news, this is the same as my first feature request. Perhaps give that some love? ;) Hopefully it'll get noticed...

    https://illustrator.uservoice.com/forums/333657-illustrator-feature-requests/suggestions/31518439-rotation-center-point-remains-with-objects-and-gro

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    On sweet heavens absolutely YES please, I've wanted this for ages. This simple feature would instantly add a ton of power to object manipulation in Illustrator.

    Say, for example, you're making an object with connected parts, like a figure (human or other animal), a chain, a machine, or simply an abstract set of connected shapes; if you can permanently position the reference point of each sub-part of that object then you have effectively 'rigged' that object. Your figure now has joints, and is instantly easy to re-position without dislocating the limbs.

    So yes, fully agreed. This gets my vote as a must-have feature.

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  5. 10 votes

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    Mark Nicoll supported this idea  · 
  6. 183 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Well, this is unusable and gets in the way a lot. The best thing about it is that I can disable it!

    As Egor says, a lot more control is needed for this to be more useful than annoying.

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  7. 3 votes

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    Mark Nicoll supported this idea  · 
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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Currently experiencing a version of this in versions 26 and 27 on a MBP, Ventura

  8. 10 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    I'm experiencing something similar on versions 26 and 27 on a Macbook Pro running Ventura. I've gone looking for steps to repeat the bug and so far have failed to reliably pin down anything conclusive.

    Mostly it happens after a little while of working in a large complex file. Then, once it's active, it stays active in any and all files (including new ones) until Illustrator is restarted.

    I've also found it mostly affects only text or groups containing text... on these occasions, path items remain 'normal' with undo and redo. But not always - sometimes undo/redo breaks for everything.

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  9. 7 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    I'm having very similar symptoms in versions 26 and 27 on a Macbook Pro running Ventura. But steps to repeat the bug are prooving slipperly as ****. It just shows up when I want it least, and not when I go looking for it.

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  10. 2 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Confirmed identical behaviour in Illustrator 2022 v26.5

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  11. 1 vote

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Hi Egor, cheers for the reply.

    The main potential problem I can think of if this gets changed is if the new behaviour fails to account for selecting groups with additional appearance attributes.

    Existing behaviour: direct select on appearances (eg. strokes or fills with effects) on a group that contains any number of art items: selects the group. I don't have a problem with this - it seems reasonable.
    Problematic solution behaviour: direct select never selects groups: always art items.
    Problem: groups with strokes and fills are unselectable by the additional appearances on the group. This would make it harder to select things on the canvas by eye without using outline view.

    To avoid the above scenario, the selection behaviour just needs maintain its current distinction between groups with and without strokes and fills. The only real change is that this behaviour is made consistent between groups containing a single item and groups containing more than one item. And... yeah, I can't think of any problems arising from that.

    ____

    Another impact of this is that I've been working on a script for building a semantic hierarchy of items based on text in the grouping structure; it's essential to be able to attach additional tags to these text items, but if they're in a group by themselves they're unselectable and thus their tag properties are inaccessible. There are ways round it, but not ones my users find intuitive 

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Simpler steps to repeat:

    1) Make a text object.
    2) Group it
    3) Direct-select it

    Expected behaviuor: The text object is selected, with all its properties visible in the appearance pannel, as it would be if there was more than one element in the group. The direct-select tool should never select groups unless the group itself has a stroke or fill to select.

    Actual behaviuor: the group object is selected.

    Impact: selection chaos: you don't know what you're going to get with the direct-select tool. Sometimes groups, sometimes art items.

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  12. 732 votes

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    Hello friends,


    So far, we have received very little response on the survey form that we floated to understand your pain points better.

    A lot of our product decisions are driven by your inputs, so make sure you are taking this opportunity to voice your issues!

    Link to the survey form : https://survey.adobe.com/jfe/form/SV_cGbDwd2k1gfpIOO

    Requesting all of you to please fill the survey form. It will take less than 2 mins!


    Thanks in advance.

    Saurav

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Just to echo the previous comments about M1 Macs, as a long-time PC user and heavy-duty Illustrator user, I've always been on the look out for the best hardware to run Illustrator. I always believed that this meant getting the fastest single-core performing Intel chip, which naturally meant PC because Macs are so expensive.

    Last year I wrote my own Illustrator benchmark script. It runs a series of timed operations of various sorts, from transforming complex vectors, rendering effects, zooming in and out, file saving and so on, and then gives a score. I ran it on a lot of high-end PCs. And then I ran it on an M1 Macbook Pro. To say it blew the PCs out of the water is an understatement. I was utterly shocked; the difference was in the range of 400-500% (according to my Illustrator benchmark script)!

    Macs still get on my nerves in other ways, but it's hard to argue with silicon like that. It justifies the price difference.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    I'm currently hanging around waiting for Illustrator to finish embedding some linked AI files. I have a handful of other files open, but the whole app is locked up so I can't do anything else. It's using 10% CPU capacity (100% on one core). Crazy much?

    In other news, I was one of those suckers who went for an Nvidia Quadro card based on all the marketing hype of 10X performance gains in Illustrator... more like constant instability and negative performance issues (and hours wasted experimenting with drivers)! I occasionally turn on so called "GPU Performance" again to see if anything has improved; not so far.

    So yeah, multi threaded CPU functionality would be favourite in this day and age.

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  13. 4 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Ok, good to know, thanks.

    Incidentally, I'm very glad you're now an admin here. I've always appreciated your broad knowledge and focus, and thought if would be a good thing if Adobe had you on board :)

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Egor - yes, it does.

    Are you saying the current behaviour (without that workaround), where it displays haphazard anti-aliased edges, is intended?

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  14. 4 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Another unhelpful characteristic of the shortcut text export is the waysome menu commands names have no context and are thus meaningless. So the 'release' command for compound path, blend and mask are all named the same thing: "Release". There are a number of other instances of this.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    On closer inspection, there are more errors. Shorcuts for the following tools are all correctly listed on Mac, but are incorrectly listed as blank when exported on Windows.

    Blend
    Dynamic Shapes Tool
    Ellipse
    Magic Wand
    Slice
    Smart Remove Brush Tool
    Warp

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  15. 181 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Ok, so editable PDFs are a thing. Fine. But there is a fundamental functional design principle being violated when “Save As” can result in an un-editable document. The user expects the current document to always behave in the same way when it is saved, closed and re-opened using the feature designed for saving a natively editable document, as opposed to exporting it for use elsewhere.

    The solution is clear; Save As/PDF should always maintain “Preserve Illustrator Editing Capabilities” with all the current document information preserved. Saving a non-editable PDF should be available separately through ‘Save A Copy’ (or Export).

    The top level categorisations should support the user's intended purpose (eg. to preserve a working document), not the vague complexities of PDF configuration options.

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Wow... thank you, at last.

    I thought it was just me who found it insane to have such a dangerous 'gotcha' hidden right in the middle of everyone's every day working path!

    And yeah, save us some clicks!

    "a disgrace that this can happen in a program that’s over 30 years old." That applies to dozens upon dozens of these feature requests and bug reports. This. Is. Adobe Illustrator.

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  16. 6 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Assuming that what gets implemented is what Egor just said, then yeah, absolutely. Ideally with logical operators too, enabling (for example) an action to behave differently depending on the type of item selected, or to toggle its function depending on some status (eg. Scale Corners = true? : option A, option B)

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  17. 12 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    You're right. Do make sure you speak dirrectly to a customer support agent. I had an issue where the 'current' releases all featured a show-stopping bug with a critical feature, and needed access to an older version. They were able to help in that instance.

  18. 10 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Agreed, this is madening. Causes bugs I've never seen before too. Nest errors or some such, followed by errors grouping objects due to be more than 29 sub-levels deep (which I didn't want or make), and then a can't ungorup the objects error

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  19. 8 votes

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    Mark Nicoll commented  · 

    Yeah... super interested to know more. How imminent is this? If I go for CEP, will I have wasted effort?

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  20. 3 votes

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    Mark Nicoll shared this idea  · 
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